By Merindah Differ, 32, Melbourne, Australia
I had always wanted to get a tattoo, ever since I saw a beautiful one of a robin on a branch on a family friends shoulder, BUT I had a very big fear of needles.
I used to come close to passing out every time I went in for a vaccination shot, and literally through a 3yr old tantrum when I went for my first ever draw of blood. (No I didn’t end up having it done.)
When I fell pregnant, I started to get braver, mainly because I had to have blood tests done through out, but I had lie down, close my eyes and look away from the nurse while she did it.
At this time also I revisited the idea of having a tattoo done. I wanted something meaningful to do with becoming a mum.
I had 2 natural drug free births, quiet possibly the most painful thing I had ever endured. But the thought of a bazillion needles stabbing my flesh put me off the idea of going through with it.
However my design for a tattoo continued to evolve.
The husband and I decided to not have anymore kids. Meaning I could go ahead and think about doing things for myself instead of preparing for another little child.
Over this time, every member of my family got a tattoo, my Mum who is almost 60, got her first one last year. And my youngest sister who has 10 of them.
So 4 months ago, I bit the bullet, after much research and questions to my many friends with tattoos, I booked an appointment at a tattoo parlor and put a really big amount of money down for a down payment so I would be less likely to bail on the appointment.
Over the four months I continued to save, and got a nice draw up on what I wanted and I was excited.
Come the day, my hands sweated all the way there, but I wasn’t nervous yet. It wasn’t until I stepped into the parlor that I suddenly started to feel my stomach do back flips. We discussed the finishing touches on what I wanted, and he prepared everything to get started.
My step sister was there for support.
Everyone I knew told me the same thing. “Think of a sunburn being scratched over and over again” Mentally I was ready for that.
I straddled a chair and it began. I am not going to lie, it hurt. I am pretty sure the pillow I was gripping onto would have died of strangulation if it had been human. My step sister did a great job keeping up conversation.
My back went through different levels of numbness, but by the end, I am pretty sure I was beginning to reach my limit. Lucky for me, at that point he had finished.
The end result was beautiful.
I was not only so damn happy, but so proud I got through it all without having to stop once, or cry, and I didn’t swear or flinch or anything.
The tattooist said I did a very good job.
Anyway, I feel like I can face a needle pretty easily now that I just sat through a billion of them.
I actually have been thinking about future ones now as well.
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